Biting off more than you can chew

Review 134 Launch

It’s tempting to say yes to everything, isn’t it? Especially when the things you’re agreeing to could lead to money/friends/adulation/fame. Well, maybe not the last one, but we can always hope.

When someone asks me to do something, there’s always a pause, a moment where I riffle through the baggy filofax of my mind, looking for the many reasons I can’t. But in the pressure of the moment, the pages I’m looking for aren’t there, and somehow I find myself saying yes. Then, when it sinks in that I’ve bitten off more than I can chew yet again, I toss that mental filofax across the room in a fit of despair, howling ‘how will I fit it all in?’

Resigned, I add the new task to my list, for it to then be ignored in turn when the next request comes up. And so it goes. I tell myself I’ll shake it up and start saying no more often, but how can I, when by turning something down I might be missing out on something?

Some of that hard work paid off last week, after all, with the launch of the latest Edinburgh Review, which we held at the lovely new Looking Glass Books, and it was great fun. The readers were fab and there was some good chat in the pub afterwards.

Do you say yes when really you mean ‘No, I’m too busy, go away and leave me alone. Unless you have cake.’?

Smut and Monsters

If I was a little richer, I’d be on my way to Manchester right now to help the FlashTag crew celebrate the launch of Quickies, a book of flash fictions that’s sure to be a regular smut fest. A have a wee story in there myself, and would’ve loved to join the nice people I met back in for an evening of raunchy readings, but sometimes the bank balance has other ideas.

Luckily, I am somewhat consoled by the fact I’ll be reading with Illicit Ink in Edinburgh on Sunday, as part of Monsters, Ink. Looking forward to hearing what spooky fare the line-up is planning on dishing out.

So it’s a week of smut and monsters, and is likely to turn out to be more exciting than most.

Book festival fun times

I’m kind of missing in action this week. On holiday from work and yet running around so much I feel as though I could sleep for a few days straight. And I probably would, if I didn’t already have a bunch of things to do on those days.

On Sunday I had an excellent time chatting away to some writery folk, getting some great tips for my next short story purchases and reading in the Book Festival Speigeltent. I was pretty nervous I have to admit, but a bunch of my lovely friends and family came along and it was amazing fun. These are the stories I read.

Lynsey May reading at Story Shop at Edinburgh Book Festival

Me reading at Edinburgh City of Literature Story Shop

Other book festival highlights so far have to be Gutter’s McHigh night which featured some amazing readings and a highly entertaining Neil Gaiman and Audrey Niffeneger event. Sigh, grand times, if only there could be a book festival every month? Although I suppose too much of a good thing is always a terrible idea.

A day of words, words and more words

When it comes to writing, there are times when months and months go by and it feels as though nothing is happening, nothing will ever happen. And then there are times when suddenly, everything happens at once – this is one of those times.

I feel as though I’m at the centre of a veritable flurry of literary things, and I’m loving it.

Today I read some stories as part of the InkyFingers Mini Fest and when I got home, my inbox had three nice surprises for me – a bunch of my writing all went live on the same day!

At IdeasTap, I’ve an article about financing a writing career without feeling as though you’re sacrificing the ability to write.

There’s a wee flash piece bout a women under siege called Edith’s Voice over at The Pygmy Giant.

And Metazen also published Yonica’s Beautiful Things, which just happens to be one of the stories I also read aloud today.

Whew, if only every day was as literary! Although to be honest, I’m about ready to curl up with a good book now. Maybe until Sunday, when I am super excited to be reading as part of the Edinburgh City of Lit Story Shop at the Book Festival – whew!

I best start packing the books!

At last! The mortgage papers have been signed, the solicitor has been paid, and now I’m technically on track for buying my new flat! All I really have to do in the next few weeks is try to not accidentally get arrested or go bankrupt. Of course, I’ll also have to start packing – and that means booking up all of those hundreds of books, again.

I’ve moved house about three times for every two years since I left home at 17. I’m getting pretty good at packing. The only problem is, the older I get, the larger my collection of books. I’d say that for every 30 books that come over my threshold, one might end up with a charity shop – the rest I just can’t bear to part with. Good for my collection, bad for my back when moving.

This time though, I’ll be moving and knowing I’m planning to stay for a good long while, I’ll be able to luxuriate in sorting them out and re-homing them all (and I plan to buy some new shelves so they don’t end up stacked on the floor like they so often have).

many books on shevles and stacked on the floor.

A small selection of my messy books

I am so excited, although ever so slightly scared of jinxing it…. so, shh, I never told you about this new flat right? The last few months of 2010 may have dragged by excruciatingly slowly as I waited for one thing or another to be resolved, but this year has been one wild ride so far.